At our monthly meeting on Saturday, we discussed a number of the local ballot measures (listed at https://sfelections.sfgov.org/measures with links to the text of each measure), and voted to take positions on a number of them:
• Health and Homelessness, Parks, and Streets Bond – NO
• Removing Citizenship Requirements for Members of City Bodies – NO POSITION
• Real Estate Transfer Tax – NO
• Affordable Housing Authorization – NO
• Parcel Tax for San Francisco Unified School District – NO
• Neighborhood Commercial Districts and City Permitting – YES
• Business Tax Based on Comparison of Top Executive's Pay to Employees' Pay – NO
• CalTrain Sales Tax (regional measure RR) – NO
The citizenship measure was a tough one – initially I thought it would be an easy yes, but then we discovered that while it would remove the requirement to be a U.S. citizen to serve on government bodies (a positive change), it would also remove the ability of citizens living outside SF (e.g. someone working in SF but living in the East Bay, like our treasurer) ineligible for such service. After some discussion, we decided to remain neutral.
There are five remaining local measures on which we did not vote:
• Public Works Commission, Department of Sanitation and Streets, and Sanitation and Streets Commission
• Youth Voting in Local Elections
• Sheriff Oversight
• Police Staffing
• Business Tax Overhaul
It was decided that the officers will vote on positions for these remaining measures that we ran out of time on, with discussion and input from other LPSF members on the email list. (We have not yet modified our bylaws to allow for voting by the general membership between meetings, as I hope we will.) This should preferably happen in the next couple days, as the deadline to submit free ballot arguments against any measures we may oppose is noon on Thursday, August 13.
The statements on or descriptions of each ballot measure from the Controller, City Attorney, and Ballot Simplification Committee are all due today (Monday, August 10). Having that language may make it easier to decide what position to take on a couple of these – the measure regarding the Department of Public Works, and the business tax overhaul. It is not immediately clear what the likely fiscal impact of either measure would be, although I think the latter one in particular is probably bad news.
The other three measures – allowing 16-17 year olds to vote in local elections, strengthening oversight of the Sheriff's Department, and removing the mandatory minimum requirement for number of police officers (which the city government has been ignoring anyway) should all be easy "yes" votes in my opinion, but we did previously discuss the youth voting measure and there was some disagreement on that.
All the local ballot measures are also due to be assigned letters today by the Elections Department. Measure RR, being a regional measure to also be voted on by voters in other counties, already has its letter designation.
Love & Liberty,
((( starchild )))